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definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
35,272 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2002 Chrysler PT Cruiser body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2002 Chrysler PT Cruiser Owner Comments (Page 1 of 3)

problem #46

Dec 102014

PT Cruiser

  • 95,000 miles


Note: This is not a safety issue (as far as I know) but I want it to go on record from what all PT CRUISER owners have been going through. Dashboard cracked and vent grids crumbled when doing a regular cleaning (dusting with cloth). I just want to be noted that I found out that the great majority of PT CRUISER have this issue. I do not think it is fair to customers to have no protection from such poor quality materials. Manufacture should be made liable for such things.

- Dania, FL, USA

problem #45

Jul 052012

PT Cruiser 4-cyl

  • 35,585 miles
Loud cracking sounds while driving then the dash started opening up in two places, one through the vent fan all the way to the instrument panel and the other from the vent toward the glove box. Chrysler and my dealer claim they have never heard of this problem although many complaints on the web and this site? also many on this site said they contacted Chrysler. Have made appointment to replace at my cost since it doesn't seem safe to drive a car that's splitting down the middle, and Chrysler and the dealer claim no responsibility. My car has been well maintained, used sun shades and only has 35,585 miles, living on the central California coast where the weather is mild all year around. Seems like this is defective material that Chrysler should replace.

- Santa Cruz, CA, USA

problem #44

Aug 012011

PT Cruiser

  • miles
Dashboard cracked for unknown reasons.

- Double Oaks, TX, USA

problem #43

May 012010

PT Cruiser 4-cyl

  • 55,000 miles


2002 PT CRUISER 55,000 miles dash cracked in the middle.

- Crawfordville, FL, USA

problem #42

Jan 252011

PT Cruiser 4-cyl

  • 128,000 miles
While driving heard a loud crack and the dash on the car cracked about 16 inches, so far have only put duct tape on it to hopefully keep the crack from going any further. It has cracked from the left side, just under the window to almost the center vent on the dash.

- Spokaneq, WA, USA

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problem #41

Aug 012010

PT Cruiser 4-cyl

  • 74,000 miles
Car's plastic dashboard suddenly cracked in the center and pieces fell into the center vent. Dashboard now has sharp edges from the cracks, which could cause injury in the event of collision. Do to the nature of the damage I don¿T believe the dashboard complies with following: §571.201 standard no. 201; occupant protection in interior impact.

- Redding, CA, USA

problem #40

May 162009

PT Cruiser

  • miles


Dashboard has cracked from center windshield region to the air vent. The grill on the air vent has cracked and broken.

- Sacramento, CA, USA

problem #39

Mar 012010

PT Cruiser

  • 73,000 miles
Dashboard on my PT CRUISER -2002 just started cracking first a the windshield like a hair line crack - then defrost vent involved - now it has a hole in the vent - and now just this weekend another hairline crack starting at the air vent and going now to the console. What is happening to my dash? this could be a safety hazard with the air bag just down below. No wreck involved.

- Greenville, Sc, SC, USA

problem #38

Sep 302009

PT Cruiser

  • 43,450 miles
Dashboard in 2002 PT CRUISER has cracked down the middle and has began to separate into pieces. This includes the center defrost vent. Per the June 18, 2007 miami herald you had 9 complaints from owners of 2002 models and 12 from 2001 owners. This was over 2 years ago. An internet search shows many more complaints that probably haven't been filed with the NHTSA. Chrysler denies responsibility. Various manufacturers ( e.g. coverking) have already started making dash covers for the PT CRUISER specifically to cover cracked dashes; but I cannot use one as these covers do not include the center defrost vent which has broken into pieces and fallen into the vent. The only solution is to replace the entire dash cover. It has happened to enough cars surely to initiate a defect investigation. Chrysler should be made to replace these defective dashes!

- Knoxville, TN, USA

problem #37

Jun 012009

PT Cruiser

  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Chrysler PT CRUISER. The contact stated that the dashboard was completely cracked and houses the passenger side air bag. The manufacturer and dealer have not been notified. The VIN was unknown. The failure and current mileages were less than 100,000.

- Douglassville, GA, USA

problem #36

May 252009

PT Cruiser

  • 98,000 miles


I purchased my 2002 Chrysler PT CRUISER a few years ago now. I have sent Chrysler many letters about these problems. The most recent incident was very scary. I bought the car at about 31,000 miles. About a month later my paint started peeling off of the front bumper and my dash started to crack. Mind you I keep my car garaged and it is washed and waxed regularly by a shop that I have used for years with no problems. I went back to the dealer I bought it from and they were gone. So I contacted my next closest dealer. They said they could not do anything for me. About a month after that my cpu went out which was covered under the extended warranty that I purchased. They had to replace it twice before it finally lasted more than a day. Then my dash completely crumbled. It cracked from the windshield to the front in the center and on both sides. I wrote a letter and email with no answer. I then contacted Chrysler by phone and the lady told me to F% off and hung up on me. So I gave up. Obviously I was not going to get anywhere with them. Then about 3 months ago my check engine light came back on. I took my car to a friend who is a licensed mechanic and he scanned it on the computer and said it was my cpu again! I took it to the dealership and was told my warranty had expired. So I wrote another letter because this repair was going to be $1400 dollars. No response. But the scariest was about 2 weeks ago I was driving with my 13 month old niece in the car and smoke started coming from the left hand side of my steering column. I almost had got in a wreck trying to get us to safety. The smoke stopped so I figured whatever it was done for now. We were on the side of the road in a not so desirable neighborhood at night so I decided to take my chances with the car. We headed off on our way and my headlights started flickering. I parked the vehicle at home and the next morning my fairly new battery was dead. My flood lights would not turn off and had been on all night.

- Palm City, FL, USA

problem #35

Aug 012004

PT Cruiser

  • 18,000 miles
Dashboard began crumbling about 3-4 years after I bought the car (new) and is now in terrible shape and may be near collapsing. I have not checked into replacement yet. I have seen many complaints regarding this same issue with other PT CRUISER owners and other Chrysler-made cars.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #34

May 102008

PT Cruiser

  • 32,000 miles
The dash pad "cover" on our 2002 Chrysler PT CRUISER limited has cracked and broken into numerous sharp pieces. This car has been well maintained and this should not happen to a car of this age. We have other cars, older and newer that have had no issues with cracking dashboards. This is a manufacturing defect and potential safety hazard. We have become aware of this defect/safety hazard occurring on many other Chrysler PT CRUISER.

- Perkasie, PA, USA

problem #33

Nov 012008

PT Cruiser

  • 0 miles
2002 P T cruiser by Chrysler the dash board in my car started cracking. I am holding it together with tape. I am fearful of the plastic caving in and causing me to have an accident. When I reported this to Chrysler Corp., using their 800 number they were rude and said they would not help. I have found on the internet I am not the only one with this problem. What will it take for this defect to be corrected? bonita smith

- Collierville, TN, USA

problem #32

Sep 152008

PT Cruiser

  • miles
2002 PT CRUISER: Dashboard cracked in center from front window to inside edge, running across vent, requires replacement of dashboard.

- Albany, GA, USA

problem #31

Jun 022008

PT Cruiser

  • miles
2002 PT CRUISER: Cracking dashboard, improper materials used in construction, requires replacement of dashboard.

- Poway, CA, USA

problem #30

Nov 142007

PT Cruiser

  • miles
Dashboard cracked in center from front window to inside edge, running across vent, which has falling into dash in pieces; also frequently "shorts out" and radio, inside lights, dash lights, all go out making night driving dangerous.

- Cartersville, GA, USA

problem #29

Jul 152008

PT Cruiser

  • 103,400 miles
2 cracks in my 2002 PT CRUISER dashboard suddenly appeared and are expanding.

- Grand Prairie, TX, USA

problem #28

Jul 152008

PT Cruiser

  • 75,000 miles
I have a 2002 Chrysler PT CRUISER and, I noticed a small crack in the dashboard, and a couple of weeks later the small crack is now bigger and almost to my A/C vents and the vent in the dashboard is cracking badly. I feel that something might fail because of this.

- Miramar, FL, USA

problem #27

Jun 102008

PT Cruiser

  • 86,000 miles
Dashboard has cracked in about 5 different places and falling in.

- Charleston, SC, USA

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